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The Battalion

The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

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The BattalionMay 4, 2024

A&M Judicial Court rules in favor of Colton Whisenant’s disqualification

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Screen Shot 2022-10-19 at 4.52.33 PM.png

The Judicial Court of Texas A&M has ruled in favor of the Student Government Association, or SGA, Election Commission’s decision to disqualify freshman class president candidate Colton Whisenant during the 2022 SGA election.

On Oct. 13, the court agreed with the SGA Election Commission’s decision to disqualify Whisenant for “total lack of receipts or fair market value form to expense purchases,” according to the court’s official ruling.

The ruling stated that receipts must be provided for all purchases used for the purpose of soliciting votes and that Whisenant failed to do so.

“It is strongly supported by the evidence as well as the explicit text that a candidate must provide all relevant documentation, including any receipts, by the appropriate deadline,” the decision states. “In this case, the petitioner [Whisenant] did not submit any pertinent receipts with his expense report by the established deadline.”

According to the court, Whisenant’s argument to the court was that he should not be disqualified for total lack of receipts since he did technically have them, but had never submitted them to the Election Commission. 

“[Whisenant] counsel argued that the express language of ‘[t]otal lack of receipts” only refers to their physical possession and not their actual submission,” according to the ruling. “The court, however, found that the fundamental issue at hand was that of reading the particular violation with context of it whole purpose, ‘to expense purchases.’”

In a written statement to The Battalion, Whisenant’s campaign said they were disappointed by the ruling and called upon the Student Senate to make the election guidelines easier to follow.

“Our team remains convinced that this was an overreading of the election rules and cuts against the legislative intent of multiple clauses within the SGA code,” the statement reads. “We urge the Student Senate to simplify and clarify the election rules.”

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